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From cashew nut residuals and cellulose fibrils over roof shingle sealer from soy-bean oil up to innovative composite and packaging materials; six innovative bio-based chemicals and materials applications are nominated for the Bio-based Material of the Year 2018 Award.
Editorial office / Cologne

The candidates are:

  • AIMPLAS (Spain): Bio-based and biodegradable nets for green beans
    A packaging material which is more than 80% bio-based and more sustainable than conventional polyethylene nets, but has similar linear weight and mechanical properties. The innovative product is a biodegradable net suitable for green beans packaging. A compound has been developed through reactive extrusion and the combination of different biodegradable materials and additives. Chemical modification was made by grafting low molecular weight units, such as oleic alcohol, obtained by the fermentation of sugars extracted from vegetable waste (watermelon).
  • Arctic Biomaterials Oy (Finland): PLA reinforced with glass fibre that erodes back to harmless minerals in composting environment
    ArcBioxTM BGF30-B1 is a Polylactic Acid (PLA) that is reinforced using LFT (long fibre) technology with glass fibres. This innovation makes it possible that bio-based plastics can be used in technically demanding durable applications and still have the option of compostability at the end of life. The reinforcement is a glass fibre developed by Arctic Biomaterials Oy (ABM) and can also be used for several other bio-based polymers. This composite material reduces the carbon footprint and use of non-renewable energy of a composite product drastically compared to fossil-based reinforced plastics. This reinforced PLA is compostable and certified by the seedling mark from DIN CERTCO.
  • Borregaard (Norway): Exilva – World’s first commercially available cellulose fibril
    Exilva is a completely natural and sustainable three-dimensional network of cellulose fibrils, that improves rheology and stability, as well as enhancing structure in your product formulations. Due to the fibril’s flexible aggregates creating ultra-high surface area and water retention capability – that will retain their crystallinity features even after the production process – Exilva increases the formulation efficiency, reduces the CO2 footprint and creates exciting opportunities for greener innovation. Exilva also improves product stability (anti-settling) and versatility, alongside controlling dry-out time, improving barriers and enhancing uptake of active ingredients.
  • Cardolite Corporation (Belgium): Cashew nutshell residual-based blocking agent
    NX-2026 is an ultra-high purity 3-pentadeca-dienyl-phenol recently developed by Cardolite through advanced proprietary process technology. 3-pentadeca-dienyl-phenol is the main component distilled from cashew nutshell liquid, a renewable and non-edible resin extracted from the honeycomb structure of the cashew nut. NX-2026 has been successfully introduced to the coating and adhesive market as a non-toxic isocyanate (NCO) blocking agent that is a suitable replacement for petrochemical phenols. NCO systems blocked with NX-2026 provide lower viscosity and deblocking temperature than equivalent systems blocked with phenols. Moreover, NX-2026 blocked NCO prepolymers can be used in 2K epoxy systems to improve bond and T-peel strengths while maintaining good cure properties.
  • Rhenoflex GmbH (Germany): Rx 35 – rice husk filled, thermoplastic material for easy handicraft work
    Rx 35 is a biodegradable and partly bio-based thermoplastic sheet material with 35 weight-% rice husk filler. One side of Rx 35 sheets has smooth leather-like haptics and is mostly used in the visual field of final products. The other side is laminated with a fine mesh offering high strength and resilience properties. It is non-toxic, solvent-free and recyclable. Its unique properties allow for easy handicraft work by heating the material up to 90 °C. It is mainly used for tinker and fashion accessories as well as toys production, model making, theatre and many more. The utter uniqueness of Rx 35 is its versatility.
  • Ohio Soybean Council, collaborating with Roof Revivers (USA): Roof Maxx – Soy-bean-based roof material sealer
    Roof Maxx is a bio-based, renewably sourced shingle sealer-rejuvenator that is spray-applied to asphalt-based roofing materials to extend their service life up to 15 years. Roof Maxx re-saturates dried, curled, leaky shingles or modified bitumen roofing material, restoring pliability and flexibility, and enhances adhesion of the protective mineral granules. A biodegradable, green chemical that uses oil from soybeans as chemical feedstock, Roof Maxx contains no solvents, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), or toxic ingredients. Overspray is not harmful to homeowners, sealant appliers, pets, plants, building materials, or vehicles. By extending the lifespan of roofs, RoofMaxx ultimately reduces the production of asphalt roofing materials and landfill waste and improves the roofing industry’s environmental footprint.

Conference on Bio-based Materials

The winners will be elected at the 11th International Conference on Bio-based Materials, 15-16 May 2018 in Cologne, Germany. The conference, organized by the nova Institute, is is one of the biggest conferences in Europe, featuring major topics such as first and second-generation feedstocks, bio-based building blocks and polymers, and environmental solutions. For more information, see the agenda.